City Winery Memorial Day Blue Grass Festival Review - Country Fun in the West Loop

The dark skies did not at all damper the mood of City Winery’s  Memorial Day Blue Grass Festival.  Alternating between an outdoor and indoor stage, Bubbly Creek, Whistle Pigs, and Gangstagrass brought to Chicago enough toe tapping yodeling fun to lighten the spirits of the most hardened music critic.  The free flowing cider and expansive slider menu (go with the salmon/ scallop sliders if you get the chance) were a nice touch too.  And if that was not enough, Gangstagrass offers what must be the only bluegrass band fronted by rappers.  Yep, you heard that right.  Conceived by veteran artist Rench, Gangstagrass blends New York infused hip hop with traditional blue grass.  The result is innovative, not gimmicky.  Their song “Long Hard Times to Come” is the theme song of FX’s Justify.  (click here to check it out  youtube.com/watch?v=yT2i2UylxJ0 ).

Bubbly Creek at City Winery

Whistle Pigs at City Winery

Bubbly Creek and Whistle Pigs offered more traditional fare with the Creek the more bubbly of the two bands.  The Whistle Pigs had an earthier element to them (which is what you might expect considering that whistle pigs are another name for groundhogs).  Both played with a lot of heart and brought good vibes to an otherwise gloomy day.   I might live the urban life but I will always find the time for a little country fun.

Gangstagrass at City Winery

City Winery is located at 1200 W. Randolph in Chicago’s West Loop neighborhood and is the only winery/ restaurant/ concert venue in the city.  To check out upcoming events, click here citywinery.com/chicago/  

City Winery's Memorial Day Blue Grass Festival

Photos by Noel Schecter

 

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